It was another disappointing Sunday for Jaguars fans as the team dropped to 2-6 with their 28-23 loss to the New York Jets. It's time to see how our keys to victory actually played out.
Keys to a Jaguars Victory:
1. Stop the run. The Jaguars run defense was tremendous on Sunday as they held the Jets to just 29 yards on 28 carries. The Jacksonville defensive line re-set the line of scrimmage in the backfield, as they dominated the Jets blockers.
2. Throw it around. Jacksonville threw the ball 40 times, and Blake Bortles had four scrambles so the plan was clearly to attack through the air. The Jaguars began to have success throwing when they stopped challenging Darrelle Revis, who was spectacular.
3. Get Thomas involved. Julius Thomas had a drop early on and never really looked like he was mentally in the game. He finished with just three catches for 14 yards on eight targets. Thomas and Bortles are clearly not on the same page.
4. Press the receivers. The Jaguars did a much better job of challenging the Jets receivers, especially Davon House on Brandon Marshall. Marshall got him for a touchdown late, but it appeared that he may have pushed off.
5. Be better on special teams. It wasn't a complete bust in the kicking game, although the Jaguars did allow a big kickoff return and a big punt return. The main breakdown was Nick Marshall fumbling a punt when the Jaguars would have had a chance to take the lead late in the fourth quarter.
What to Look For:
1. Less than two sacks for the Jags D. The defense had exactly two sacks, but couldn't get any kind of consistent pressure on Ryan Fitzpatrick. Andre Branch continues to waste reps, as he still can't beat any legitimate NFL offensive tackle.
2. Look for a Chris Ivory TD. Although Ivory didn't gain many yards, he managed to find the end zone twice. He's a good short-yardage runner, but the Jaguars did a nice job of stopping him.
3. Look for a big day from Allen Hurns. Hurns led the team with 122 receiving yards on five catches and caught his sixth touchdown of the season. Hurns had a really nice game again.
4. Look for multiple TD's from Bortles, as well as multiple INT's. Bortles was mostly very good and he threw for a career-high 381 yards as he completed 60 percent of his throws. He did have a pair of touchdowns and a pair of interceptions as well as a fumble as he was under nearly constant duress.
5. Look for the Jaguars to play them tough, but fall short. The Jaguars played hard again, but big mistakes in key moments kept the team from winning on the road...again. That's 12 straight road losses for the Jags.